The Daily Blog Watch Friday 14 June





Today’s Daily Blog Watch Round-Up of matters that have attracted the attention, assessments, and articulations of this country’s leading bloggers…

NZ Left Blogosphere

A few days old, but Anita on Kiwipolitico asks What should I think about Dunne? I dare say quite a few bloggers are asking the same question. Interestingly, Martyn Bradbury asks a similar question on The Daily Blog;  Why are Labour & the Greens crucifying Dunne (if Dunne did in fact leak the report) for whistleblowing?

The Dunne issue is by no means as clear cut as we might think it is.

Bryce Edwards on Liberation blogs that The main issues in NZ politics today are state cyber surveillance, Peter Dunne, SkyCity and Labour, and industrial relations reform.

TDB Recommends

And all are vital issues affecting our lives. No feckin’ “X Factor” shit here.

Several  Issues of Interest on Frankly Speaking; the drop in Mighty River Power sharevalue; Air New Zealand and the Ta Moko controversy; the emerging global surveillance Police Planet; and a very strange TV ad by Visa.

On Waitakere News, Mickey Savages laments   The Great Tree Massacre coming to Titirangi soon – and posits that impending RMA “reforms”  will not bode well for tree protection measures and would be   “hopelessly unfit for purpose”.

Mickey now believes it will take a change in government to protect Titirangi’s tree line.

Why aren’t more people angry about Edward Snowden’s  revelations about global state surveillance? Through A PRISM Darkly, Chris Trotter on Bowalley Road suggests that popular entertainment has  “inoculated” the public against the apparatus of the Surveillance State,

“NCIS-LA’s winsome techies ‘Eric’ and ‘Nell’ are so busy capturing the top-rating show’s viewers’ hearts that their constant breaching of citizens’ civil rights and privacy passes, if not unnoticed, then, at the very least, unreproved. These, after all, are the people who stand between us and the ‘evil-doers’. Against such powerful inoculations of popular culture, CIA whistle-blower, Edward Snowden’s, revelations about the PRISM surveillance system are unlikely to spark outrage from more than the usual civil liberties suspects.”

Frightening stuff.

Gordon Campbell writes why everyone has a stake in surveillance reduction, and analyses the cultural background that has (supposedly) forced politicians to expand state surveillance powers. Gordon makes this critical point,

Terrorism is basically a political communications strategy. The chief threat it poses is not to the lives of American citizens but to the direction of American policy and the electoral prospects of American politicians. A major strike in America by a jihadist terrorist group in 2012 would have done little damage to America, but it could have posed a serious problem for Barack Obama’s re-election campaign. For the president the war on terror is what the Vietnam War was to Lyndon Johnson: a vast, tragic distraction in which he must be seen to be winning, lest the domestic agenda he really cares about (health-care, financial reform, climate-change mitigation, immigration reform, gun control, inequality) be derailed.”

There’s much more, and Gordon’s analysis is thought-provoking as well as informative.  (Which means you’ll never read this on the msm.)

Are Civil Servants Disposable asks Bryan Gould? Bryan writes,

“Trevor Mallard may not be everyone’s cup of tea.  Even his friends might concede that he occasionally betrays a lack of judgment.  But, in his criticism of Deputy Police Commissioner Mike Bush when the senior policeman appeared before a Select Committee, he was entirely justified.”

This is in reference to comments made by Bush at the funeral of the late Inspector Hutton – the policeman who planted evidence that wrongly convicted Artur Allan Thomas for the murders of Harvey & Jeanette Crewe. Bush said that Hutton was a man of “integrity”.

Bryan sez,  “the excuses offered for this remarkable statement – that Mike Bush was quoting words from another source or that it was a private occasion – do not stand up“.

Indeed. See also Martyn Bradbury’s blogpost on The Daily BlogMallard & Goff at their best grilling top cop who condones corruption on this issue.

Heaps to read and take in at Frogblog, as Green MPs blog on various issues and problems of the day;

“On Friday there was another step backwards for Bathurst Resources in their bid to open cast mine the Denniston Plateau. The High Court ruled that the Environment Court had been in error with some of their findings from their interim decision in March. This requires the Environment Court to re-evaluate several aspects of the original case taken by Forest and Bird.”

  • It’s been a A GE rollercoaster week writes Steffan Browning, who reports on several GE-related stories from around the world and locally.

A dishonest National minister? Well, that’s never happened before, eh, Dear Leader?

Robert Guyton also comments on the High Court decision on Denniston Plateau, which states that   “Offsetting” is not “Mitigating”.

Will Hamiltonians finally get a voice on fluoridation asks Open Parachute? I betcha if the shoe was on the other foot, anti-flouridation activists would be screaming blue-murder for a referendum.

Imperator Fish mocks the four Labour MPs who attended a Mt Eden rugby game, courtesy of Skycity. Please, I can explain! is a great  satirical  dig at those MPs ineptness.

Danyl on The Dim Post sez it’s Clever how National’s party strategists spun the story of Labour MPs at Skycity. Well, Danyl, those twats did hand it to the Tories on a plate. Labour would’ve done precisely the same thing if their positions were reversed.

No Right Turn asks if it’s  Time for Invercargill to buy the smelter? Especially since “Rio Tinto, have written more than half a billion dollars off the value of the ageing plant, leaving it with a value on its books of just $14.8 million, from $606.9 million previously”. Makes sense, financially.

In reality, I think we all know that the $14.8 million valuation is nothing more than a clever bit of accounting trickery. I think the accountant’s name is Potter… Harry Potter.

Savant point out that Jamie-lee Ross’s “Scab Bill is Too radical  even for the Employers and Manufacturers’ Association“.

Even Key appears  distinctly luke warm on the Bill, and may recognise that it will provoke a harsh reaction from pro-Union workers. More than that, it may spark a violent reaction and paint Employers as slavemasters.

Closing the public broadcaster is  Blinding the public in Greece. Yes, the government has shut down the Greek public broadcasting system, practically in the midst of an interview. As Christ Trotter pointed out on Citizen A, recently, this is the naked face of neo-liberalism.

It’s a A dark day for New Zealand, blogs Savant, and writes,

Last night, the Immigration Amendment Bill passed its third reading in Parliament. The bill allows for the indefinite detention of refugees who arrive in a “mass arrival” (30 or more people), and to allow the processing of refugee claims to be suspended indefinitely by order of the Minister, in violation of the Refugee Convention. In other words, we’ve just signed up to Australia’s racist, xenophobic refugee policy…… We are supposed to be a better country than this. We certainly think we ought to be better than the Australians. This law must be repealed. The question now is whether labour – who rightly opposed it – will actually do so when they next gain power.”

There’s going to be one helluva busy time in Parliament, post 2014, with the repeal of much of National’s laws…

The Jackal reposts Citizen A with Chris Trotter and David Slack. It’s an excellent analysis of current political events well worth a look-see!

The Civilian continues to take the piss,

“A prominent online newspaper is struggling to find the line between tasteful and offensive humour.Two co-editors of the paper, who have been trying hard not to upset anybody while still retaining their artistic license to comment on current events, have been locked in a room for several days trying to ascertain which of the several hundred lines they’ve drawn is the one that separates real humour from crass jokes masquerading as satire.”

Gee, wonder what he’s referring to?

And on a more serious note on  The Standard,


On The Daily Blog

Why Pokie Machines Should Be the First Victims of the Revolution, Chris Trotter writes,

“In short, pokies are a curse – and no political leader, or party, whose objective is to end poverty and fight exploitation should ever be found anywhere near a casino – nor, for that matter, in anything belonging to a casino.”

An open letter to Chris Finlayson, from Coley Tangerina,

“I realise nastiness and name calling is hardly new in Question Time (or politics in general), but I would have thought stories of Government assistance for survivors healing from a childhood of violation and hurt would be something off limits for a nasty joke.”

Is McDonald’s New Zealand a tax cheat? asks Mike Treen,

“The before tax profit declared for the 3 years was $146.562m. Tax paid was $46.95m – which would seem to be the correct company tax rate. The problem is that a huge amount of revenue is excluded from the profit by accounting mechanisms.”

Tax Reform: It’s Time To Investigate A Land Tax, writes Stuart Nash,

“I think that if we seriously view investment in housing as an economic / structural problem, then we should at least investigate a land tax. This is an idea recommended by Key’s own tax working group, but rejected by English. Evidence and modeling shows that such a tax would have the effect of depressing the housing market slightly, but it is a very easy tax to collect and administer, and it does only target those who own land. “

5AA Australia: Selwyn Manning & Peter Godfrey On Whether GCSB Spied On Aussies, has Selwyn Manning  this week on 5AA Australia, discussing whether New Zealand’s intelligence agency, the GCSB, has been spying on Aussies.

Ramifications of National’s new scab law, by Martyn Bradbury, who writes,

“National need a new section of the community to project divisive hate at now beneficiaries have been beaten to a bloody pulp and the Unions provide them with the perfect bogeyman to blame National’s lack of economic stewardship on.”

This last one is the “sleeping dog” – and one that will awaken soon to a violent reaction to National’s plan to finally destroy unions in New Zealand.

Make no mistake, this is the intention of Jamie-Lee Ross’s bill.

Smith’s Dream is about to become Smith’s Reality.




Rightwing Blogpost of the Day

We can’t help but wonder… asks Keeping Stock on the poor decision-making shown by four Labour MPs to accept a Skycity invite to their corporate box at Mt Eden.

As the blogger quite rightly points out,

So Kris Faafoi may have actually been the worst offender here, we reckon. As a relatively junior back-bench MP, invitations to corporate boxes probably don’t come along every day. But surely, he [sic]  journalistic training and instincts should have kicked in.

Damn right.

This time Labour MPs scored an own-goal. WTF were they thinking???


Action of the Week

Homelessness – The Big Sleepout 2013 Appeal –  Martyn Bradbury writes,

On the 4th July I will be going homeless. For one cold night in the dead of winter I will be stripped of my creature comforts, exposed to the elements and given insight into what it means to sleep rough.I live in the central city and I have for almost two decades. The homeless problem in central Auckland, has to my eyes steadily increased.If we don’t bring attention to the poverty that is driving this homelessness, we won’t ever generate the solutions necessary to solve homelessness.EVERY dollar I fundraise will be directly applied to Lifewise’s unique “no band aids” approach to homelessness. The Lifewise response continues to be Auckland’s most successful answer to the issue of homelessness. So before I bed down on a slab of concrete I’d love to ask if you might sponsor me. Please back me and please back this worthy cause by digging deep today.Thank you.

Please donate here


Thought for the Day

Religion in a  world torn apart by religion


~ Joe Blogger

“The Daily Blog Watch” Editor, Imbiber of Fine Sugary Drinks,  & Cat Herder